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  • Leaving while at sea

    I?m at sea currently and I really really don?t like it. I understand it could be the typical first trip missing home but it?s much more than that I feel. I?m feeling depressed and I know now that I have made a mistake and I will leave my cadetship as soon as this trip is over. I am on an ERRV for a 6 week trip. Is there any way I can leave early??

  • #2
    Your contract will state how you have to give notice of resignation.

    As you are onboard a ship you should write a letter detailing that you wish to resign and would like to be repatriated as soon as possible (or whatever your contract states) and give it to the master. He/She will then deal with the rest.

    You haven't stated how long you've got left onboard or even how long you've been onboard, it may be worth leaving it till the end of the trip as you will not get another shot if you later decide you made a mistake and even 6 weeks isn't really long enough to determine if you hate being at sea or not.
    ?Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn?t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.?

    ? Mark Twain
    myBlog | @alistairuk | flickr | youtube Views and opinions expressed are those of myself and not representative of any employer or other associated party.

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    • #3
      My first trip at sea was on an 8 week trip on an ERRV and I was pretty miserable if I'm honest, but I stuck with it and the next trip I did I actually started to enjoy myself and had a great time. If you can stick it out it is worth it as it might just be that you aren't with a great crew or the ship has a very quiet contract in a very rough area. Try and finish the trip and see how you feel afterwards. Feel free to private message me if you want I almost quit half way through that first trip.

      Generally most ERRVs only go into port for crew change every 28 days (unless they have a cargo contract) so you would only be able to leave then. As Alistair said it will depend on the your sponsorship contract.. Most N. Sea companies would let you off as soon as the boat next goes to port unless its Sentinel who seem to replace one of the FRC Boatmen with cadets to save ??? which may mean they might be less keen on letting you off early.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by GingerWhinger View Post
        My first trip at sea was on an 8 week trip on an ERRV and I was pretty miserable if I'm honest, but I stuck with it and the next trip I did I actually started to enjoy myself and had a great time. If you can stick it out it is worth it as it might just be that you aren't with a great crew or the ship has a very quiet contract in a very rough area. Try and finish the trip and see how you feel afterwards. Feel free to private message me if you want I almost quit half way through that first trip.

        Generally most ERRVs only go into port for crew change every 28 days (unless they have a cargo contract) so you would only be able to leave then. As Alistair said it will depend on the your sponsorship contract.. Most N. Sea companies would let you off as soon as the boat next goes to port unless its Sentinel who seem to replace one of the FRC Boatmen with cadets to save ??? which may mean they might be less keen on letting you off early.
        It?s more the fact I know I would 10000% prefer a career where I can be at home and socialise, see family etc. The work and conditions aren?t anything bad for anyone who would like a career at sea. I just know after my trip is over I will leave. I?m young enough to be able to start another career. All the crews are doing an extra 2 weeks to make it the usual 4 week trip plus 2 weeks because of two weeks extra the back to backs did when all the stuff was going on with France and the UK a few weeks ago. I?ve been having panic attacks pretty much every night when I?m in the cabin which is something I?ve never had before & it?s grim to hear I?m going to be at least another 4 weeks until I can get off.

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        • #5
          Seems likely you?ll have to stay remainder of trip until you get into port for crew change. If you?re certain you want to finish I?d make your intentions known with your training officer and the captain, they?ll understand. You won?t be able to get off early I dare say, unless you want to make a big stink and I really don?t think that?s the way to go. Best of luck.

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          • #6
            I was also on a ERRV for my first trip, 8 weeks long. I was really miserable too, homesick, seasick and nothing to do in my downtime. The cabin was small, mattress and bedding was ****e and the weather was unbelievably bad in the north sea. Plus, the crew I was with wasn't good either, they did not let me get involved in anything. Just cleaning mindlessly everyday. The first 4 weeks was probably the worst 4 weeks of my life, I really felt like I was in prison. I was on the phone t my parents telling them I was so depressed and wanted to quit, etc etc.
            But then the next crew I got (same ship) was really good and turned it around for me. They taught me a lot and got my involved in everything to do with the running of the ship, and then the next ship after that was even better. In return I worked hard everyday for them and they said I was the best cadet they'd had so far.
            So I recommend you stay with it.
            Personally I think ERRVs are not a very good type of vessel for training cadets but you do learn some interesting and specialist stuff like MOB drills and rescue equipment that you won't find on any other type of ship.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Guest View Post

              It?s more the fact I know I would 10000% prefer a career where I can be at home and socialise, see family etc. The work and conditions aren?t anything bad for anyone who would like a career at sea. I just know after my trip is over I will leave. I?m young enough to be able to start another career. All the crews are doing an extra 2 weeks to make it the usual 4 week trip plus 2 weeks because of two weeks extra the back to backs did when all the stuff was going on with France and the UK a few weeks ago. I?ve been having panic attacks pretty much every night when I?m in the cabin which is something I?ve never had before & it?s grim to hear I?m going to be at least another 4 weeks until I can get off.
              It does sound like maybe you'd be better off elsewhere, I have heard of a few cadets who have left after the first trip on ERRVs and if you are honest to the captain that its not for you then they'll do their best to help you out (most will). I would let the captain or perhaps C/O know first and then your training officer as it will go straight back to them so best to let know. I've just seen that certain ERRV with certain distinct logos and red/white colour scheme have gone to 6 week trips - I sailed with them as a cadet and finished recently so if its them your with feel free to PM me.

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              • #8
                Mirroring what other people have said... I hated parts of my first trip - crews especially on your first trip can make a huge difference on your enjoyment and sometimes if you wait it out a bit for a new crew / ship it could completely change your perspective on things. There were people on my first ship that really made my trip from a **** start into something I really loved. Just make sure you know you definitely want to leave as it is nearly impossible from what i?ve heard to get back into any cadetship in the future if you do because of the funding! Best of luck

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                • #9
                  Thanks for responses. I’ve spoken to company and they agree with my decision because they can tell I’m not happy & that my reasons are good. However they say it will be 5 weeks until can get off the vessel, which I understand but it’s very frustrating because we can see the land quite often and are only about 15 miles away from it.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Guest View Post
                    Thanks for responses. I’ve spoken to company and they agree with my decision because they can tell I’m not happy & that my reasons are good. However they say it will be 5 weeks until can get off the vessel, which I understand but it’s very frustrating because we can see the land quite often and are only about 15 miles away from it.
                    Well done mate, not an easy thing to do but if you know in your heart of hearts that this isn't for you then you've done the right thing. Hang in there, five weeks is not a long time in the grand scheme of things. Keep yourself busy and the time will fly by. Best of luck with whatever you decide to do next!

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                    • #11
                      Good job on making the tough call. I’m sure life onboard will seem a little bit happier now you have light at the end of the tunnel. Try and enjoy it knowing you won’t have to endure it ever again, at least you’ll have a story to tell people in years to come and can say you’ve experienced the North Sea (assuming you’re there) in the winter! Hope the time flies and good luck in the next adventure!

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                      • #12
                        Speak to the master, ive seen plenty lads get off early over the years. Relief ship will pick you up and get put you on the next boat to c/c. If the master is decent he will get u off. As a cadet you are extra and dont count towards manning levels... if you have to stick it out just keep the head up, its only a few weeks in the grand scheme of things.

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